Nesmith Library

Windham, New Hampshire

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[VIRTUAL] Life Downstairs: British Servant Culture in Fact, Fiction, and Film - A New Hampshire Humanities Program

THIS IS A VIRTUAL PROGRAM. It will be held online using a virtual meeting service (Zoom). Please register at this link to receive access information for the meeting, and follow the instructions to be ready to join the meeting. Please email Adult Programming Librarian Maria with any questions!

Registration is required / Adults, ages 16 and up

While master/servant narratives have been popular for centuries, there seems to be a resurgence of interest in these stories in recent years. Join Nesmith Library virtually on Wednesday, May 19 at 6:30 PM when English professor Ann McClellan examines the reasons why these plot lines intrigue us and introduces us to some of the works that represent this genre.

Many contemporary British and North American writers, filmmakers, and television executives have explored the master/servant relationship in their works. Films like The Remains of the Day and Gosford Park garnered numerous Oscar nominations and substantial box office profits. PBS created such classics as Upstairs, Downstairs and Manor House, as well as the phenomenally successful Downton Abbey. Even mainstream American television has piloted its own versions of the British servant in shows as wide-ranging as The Fresh Prince of Bel Air to reality TV's Supernanny. Learn more as Ann explores the history behind the rise and fall of British servants and why Americans are so fascinated by their stories on page and screen.

Ann McClellan is professor of English and Interim Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Plymouth State University where she teaches 19th and 20th century British literature. She is the author of How British Women Writers Transformed the Campus Novel (2012), Sherlock's World: Fanfiction and the Reimagining of BBC's Sherlock (2018), and several articles on cultural topics ranging from servants on screen to social media, fan fiction, and Sherlock Holmes. She is currently writing a new monograph on Black Sherlock Holmes adaptations.

To register for this online program, please register at this link. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information on how to join the webinar.

This online program is made possible by a generous grant from New Hampshire Humanities.

Please email Adult Programming Librarian Maria with any questions!

Date: 
Wednesday, May 19, 2021 - 6:30pm
Event Category: 
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